If given the choice, would you pursue a football career, or a mechanical engineering career? Not many would choose engineering, but that’s just one of the things that makes Bruce Beuzard IV so unique.
A D.C. native and long-time Excel enthusiast, Bruce turned down football scholarship offers from colleges because they didn’t have mechanical engineering programs. His passion for knowledge even led him to earn a staggering 13 certifications, along with the title of Microsoft Office Specialist Excel U.S. National Champion.
Bruce’s ride has been unconventional and inspiring, and we can’t wait for you to hear his story.
Certiport: Bruce, we can’t believe it’s been over a year since you took home the gold at the MOS U.S. National Championship.
Bruce: I know, I can hardly believe it myself. Winning first place was my favorite memory from the competition. After finishing the exam at the competition, I felt so confident! When they announced third and second places, there was only first place left. When my name was called, I was so excited!
Certiport: So much has changed since you won in 2019, but we know what hasn’t changed is how busy you are. Tell us what you’re doing these days.
Bruce: I have lots going on right now. I’m working toward my bachelor’s degree at George Washington University, studying mechanical engineering. On top of my schooling, I’m working as a Data Center Technician for Amazon. I work in Chantilly, VA, but live in D.C. It’s quite a commute, but the work is extremely fun, especially since I’m surrounded by an incredible team of technicians.
Certiport: Plenty to keep you busy! Tell us what you do as a Data Center Technician.
Bruce: My job is to ensure that Amazon’s hosts and servers are functioning at their full ability. I manage everything from software upgrades to hardware replacement when systems fail.
Certiport: Not a small job, especially when you consider that you’re working for the second largest private employer in the United States.
Bruce: The stakes are high, but I don’t mind working under pressure.
Certiport: Did you always know that you wanted a career in technology like this?
Bruce: My end goal is to become a robotics engineer. I’ve wanted that to be my career ever since I was the team and mechanical captain for my first robotics team in high school. I’ve also been interested in programs like Microsoft Excel for a long time, but I didn’t get seriously interested in certifications for my career until I started attending a job readiness program called Career Connections at the D.C. Department of Employment Services (DOES). It was a three-week program, and when you finished, you were placed in a role to gain work experience. The DOES knew that I wanted to be a robotics engineer, and saw my technical skills, so they recommended I get certified. They placed me at the Latin American Youth Center Career Academy (LAYCCA), and that was the real start of my certification journey.
When I got to LAYCCA, I was under the impression that I would only be studying for one certification but LAYCCA had a lot more to offer me. LAYCCA offered around 35 certifications, and I completed my first 10 certifications in a mere 10 days there. I have to give a major shoutout to Abner Soto-Henry and the rest of the LAYCCA for helping me to earn all my certifications and telling me all about the MOS Championship.
Certiport: So many people helped you on your journey, which is exactly what we hope for every student. Do you think that certifications played a crucial role in getting you where you are today?
Bruce: Absolutely! A lot of companies love when applicants have earned certifications because it serves as a form of work experience. For any student running into roadblocks getting their degree, I totally recommend getting certified. Certifications can help you achieve the career of your dreams.
Interested in helping your students pursue the career of their dreams? Certiport offers a portfolio of certifications for any career pathway! Learn more here.